Tuesday, Jul 26, 2016
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Letters to the Editor

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Forgive priest, and move on

What is going on with critics of Gerald Robinson’s grave site (“‘‍We are gathered here not to accuse ... or to excuse’; Hundreds attend diocesan funeral honoring convicted priest Robinson,” July 12)? Whether he was a vicious priest who slew a bossy nun and didn’t get caught for years, or whether jurors made a mistake, as they sometimes do, one thing seems certain.

Those who interred Father Robinson in a Catholic cemetery and those who think his bones belong in a dunghill purport to be Christians. The basic tenet of Christianity is forgiveness.

It is a concept subject to misuse. Roman Catholic hierarchy, to avoid scandal, for decades made forgiveness an excuse not to bring clerical sexual felons to justice.

Father Robinson died in prison, a sick old man proclaiming an innocence few believe.

Now he is dead and buried. Aren’t there livelier battles to fight?

EILEEN FOLEY

Lowe Road

 

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People wrongly rip Robinson

People such as Blade columnist Marilou Johanek show their moral superiority with spiteful attacks on and ignorance of the practices of the Catholic Church (“Robinson’s funeral a sign: Church protects its priests,” op-ed column, July 19).

Father Robinson got no special treatment. It was a standard priestly funeral.

Although it may offend Ms. Johanek’s sensibilities, the Catholic Church affords due process to priests who are accused of crimes. Ms. Johanek admits that Father Robinson had not exhausted his appeals.

I’m sorry he died before she could sate her need for vengeance. Had his final appeal been denied, I have no doubt that he would have been removed from the priesthood.

The church already had forbidden him from exercising the role of a priest. I’m sorry it didn’t happen fast enough to suit Ms. Johanek.

NICK BATT

Holland, Ohio

 

Nurse reflects on nun’s murder

I worked as a registered nurse for 32 years at Mercy Hospital, and worked the 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., shift the weekend Sister Margaret Ann Pahl was murdered in 1980. (“Robinson’s death closes a chapter, but not the book,” commentary, July 12). I remember Gerald Robinson as a slight, timid, quiet priest, who went about his duties as Mercy’s chaplain without complaints.

Your commentary describes Sister Margaret Ann as one who “demanded everything to be done exactly as she wanted it done, and on time.” This was a true picture.

Members of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests protested that Father Robinson should not have had a priest’s funeral. I feel they forgot the saying: Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

I do not know whether Father Robinson murdered Sister Margaret Ann. The truth remains between Father Robinson and God.

SHARON PATTERSON

Monclova Township

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